Earth 2 – Survival Of The Fittest

Our intrepid crew are still running low on supplies as the winter continues (this show has been like half winter at this point) and four of them volunteer to go out and get supplies from a pod that landed during the original crash landing. Unfortunately, it doesn’t turn out well, as the pod has been emptied, either during the crash or by Grendlers after. Now these four (Danziger, Julia, Alonso, and Morgan) don’t even have enough rations to make it back to camp, and seem to be doomed.

But then the episode surprised me and we have Yale showing up to save them. You’d think the rescue would have been the whole point of the episode, but no! Instead they get safely back to camp and we learn that something bad happened while they were out there. It’s doled out in mildly-Rashomon-style flashbacks. The stranded crew were starving and Danziger followed a Grendler to its stash hoping to find supplies, but it went bad, he panicked and shot the Grendler. Then, it wasn’t an easy decision for them, but they ate some of the Grendler’s corpse. This is the only thing that kept them alive long enough to get rescued by Yale.

Back in the “present” of the episode, another Grendler comes to camp and Danziger assumes it is seeking revenge and threatening True. Instead, we eventually learn, it only wanted an answer for why its friend (Friendler?) was killed. Danziger is often depicted as the rugged, common sense guy of the show, and his manliness can chafe against my tastes, so seeing him get a chance here to tearfully admit that he made a mistake and that the Grendler didn’t die in vain because it helped them live made him a lot more appealing in my eyes (Clancy Brown, of course, does a great job with it). And honestly, the fact that the show let one of its star characters actually kill an innocent in a moment of panic without reneging on it at the end impressed me.

Anyway, I don’t have many other thoughts for this one. It was a good episode. I feel like the show considers the Terrians the star aliens of the show, but I like the Grendlers. They’ve got more character. I wish Star Trek, decades after this show, could give us one alien species in Starfleet as neat as the Grendlers. I guess if I need one other thing I can point out that there was acidic water in the Grendler’s cave and I liked that because it called back to that time they encountered acidic water before. Consistency like that makes the planet feel more alive.



Though Baines, Walman, and Magus all get a bit of a role in this one, everyone’s favourite character, Cameron, doesn’t have much to do. When the rescued four are brought back to camp, Julia immediately starts giving Cameron orders. Maybe he’s been working as her assistant? That could be.

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